NHL Free Agency: Buffalo Sabres trade for goalie Anders Nilsson
GMTM finally gets a goalie
The Swedish revolution at the Buffalo Sabres continues in earnest, as the Buffalo Sabres yesterday traded a 5th Round 2017 Draft pick to the St. Louis Blues for goaltender Anders Nilsson.
A big-bodied goalie in the Tim Murray mold was what we had expected, and is exactly what we got too. The 6'5", 227lbs player is signed through till the end of the 2016-17 season at a $1M cap hit.
The folks over at Elite Prospects quite like this goalie, saying -
A huge goaltender that is technically skilled. Nilsson has good hockey smarts plays with calmness and has good mental strength. Challenges the shooters and has been very consistent during his career, rarely having bad games. Furthermore, he is athletic and quite agile.
ANDERS NILSSON, G - (SWE; NHL - St Louis Blues)
2009 Rd 3, Pick 1, #62 overall - 6'5", 227lbs; DOB - 1990-03-19
The player comes from good bloodlines, with his father also a goalie and his brother a forward both also playing the game in Sweden at competitive level. Nilsson has a diverse range of experience have played in the Swedish leagues, a full season including playoffs in the KHL, a couple of dozen games in the NHL between the Islanders, Oilers and Blues, and some international play too with bronze medals in the World Juniors and Worlds.
Drafted 62nd in the 2009 NHL Draft by the Islanders, it looks like the 26-year-old will fight it out with Linus Ullmark for the backup spot behind Robin Lehner, with the loser of the battle getting the big minutes at the Rochester Americans in the AHL.